Count Machuki

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Count Machuki (born Winston Cooper) has been hailed as the first man to speak over a record, the first DJ. One of the original men of the dancehall scene in Jamaica, Machuki worked as a disc selector…
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Count Machuki (born Winston Cooper) has been hailed as the first man to speak over a record, the first DJ. One of the original men of the dancehall scene in Jamaica, Machuki worked as a disc selector (eventually to become known as toasters, and then DJs) for Tom the Great Sebastian. On one fateful evening, while Sebastian left the hall to get more liquor for the bar, Machuki began turning new records on the turntable to keep the crowd moving. From a success then, he moved on to other larger halls and worked with bigger names, eventually working with Clement Dodd (Sir Coxsone). It was with Sir Coxsone on an Easter concert that Machuki first picked up a microphone at the same time as working the turntable, telling jokes over the beats. Liking the reaction, he began working on bits of lyrics that he could use in future concerts, his first (take note of this, this is the absolute earliest example of rap) being "If you dig my jive/you're cool and very much alive/Everybody all round town/Machukis' the reason why I shake it down/When it comes to jive/You can't whip him with no stick." Also, Machuki pioneered what he termed "peps", what was to become something of a predecessor to later beatboxing. The one problem for anyone looking for the Machuki sound is its rarity -- he was rarely recorded at all. One example can be found though on the Baba Brooks Band's Alcatraz, if you can find it.